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Boardinghouse

In German-speaking regions you will often find the term "boardinghouse". Unlike in the English linguistic usage this expression refers to a classic apartment house.

By now this term has become archaic, since it means something completely different in an international context. However, here in Germany it is still being used in order to describe accommodation which can be booked for extended periods of time. They are of acceptable standard and comfort, often newly built and provide all the amenities needed when away from home for some time.

From a historical viewpoint boardinghouses were basic accommodation for migrants in Australia and America which provided board and lodge. Today, low-income people find a temporary home in these establishments which are supported by state subsidies. In the UK boardinghouses often refer to humble accommodation for students.

Since the continued use of the word boardinghouse is confusing for international guests looking for long-term accommodation in the German-speaking regions, the Charter for the Definition of the Serviced Apartment Industry advocates for the sole use of the expression apartment house. Hopefully, the term boardinghouse in it´s current meaning will dissappear from the common usage in the long run.